The West Genesee boys basketball team played twice on the road in a span of three nights, but won them both to improve to 4-2 in advance of its own brand-new holiday tournament.
This started Tuesday night, at Auburn, where the Wildcats came from behind with a big second half to beat the Maroons 58-49.
Having just put scares into Fayetteville-Manlius and Corcoran on back-to-back nights, Auburn was not in the least worried about WG, and showed it in the second quarter, using an offensive surge to seize a 27-22 lead going into the break.
But the Wildcats made the proper adjustments and, led by Phil Allen and Mike Henry, caught up in the third quarter to tie it, 40-40. Then the defense contained Auburn throughout the final minutes as WG doubled up the Maroons, 18-9, in that final period.
Allen led both sides with 20 points, while Henry, with 12 points, also hit double figures. Sean Howard contributed nine points as Matt Naton and Scott Sidnam managed six points apiece.
As a whole, WG’s defense did a sensational job containing Auburn’s top player, Mike Granato, holding him to four points, something that Chris Courtney (13 points), Joe Wilson (10 points) and Kyree Rufus (nine points) could not make up for.
The Wildcats maintained this momentum Thursday night, going to Baldwinsville and watching Allen set a career mark in a 72-64 victory over the Bees.
Here, the second quarter was pivotal as WG erased a modest 14-13 deficit, outscoring B’ville 21-12 in that frame. Eventually the margin grew to 51-37 before the fourth quarter, when the Bees tried to rally behind the work of Willie Hython, who finished with 30 points.
Allen managed to top Hython, though, as he notched 31 points from 11 successful field goals and eight free throws. Henry provided the outside threat, his 16 points featuring a trio of 3-pointers, while Jim Cunningham contributed seven points.
That same night, WG's former coach, Jerry Wilcox, was ousted at Liverpool, with reports stating that a technical foul he picked up in the Warriors' loss to the Wildcats on Dec. 16 may have led to the dismissal.